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Thehot topic "war of words" between Greece and Britain over the stone carving of the Parthenon in the Acropolis in Athens escalated on the 28th. The move of the two countries to refer to each other led to the meeting of the leaders scheduled for the day.
The meeting was cancelled. Greece and Britain accused each other.
Greek Prime Minister Kyrgiakos Mitsotakis visited Britain and was scheduled to meet with British Prime Minister Rich Sunak on 28th. However, what he said in an interview with the British media made Sunak break his promise at the last minute.
In an interview with BBC on 26th, Mitsotakis said that the Parthenon stone carving exhibited in British Museum "belongs to Greece, and it was simply stolen". In his view, this is not a dispute over ownership, but about "reunification."
Mitsotakis also asked: If the world famous paintings's Mona Lisa is cut in half and placed in museums in different countries, can people still appreciate its beauty?
This is a marble sculpture of Parthenon taken at the British Museum in London, England on September 7th. Xinhua News Agency reporter Mars photo
Mitsotakis's remarks caused dissatisfaction from the British side. Reuters quoted Sunak's office as saying on 28th that Greece had previously promised not to use Mitsotakis's visit to "bring up the problem that has been solved for a long time", that is, the ownership of the Parthenon stone carvings.
Sunak's spokesman told reporters that the British side decided to cancel the meeting in view of Greece's "failure to keep its promise".
On October 25, 2022, Rich Sunak delivered a speech in front of the Prime Minister's Office at No.10 Downing Street, London, England. Xinhua News Agency reporter Mars photo
However, the Greek side gave a different statement. The BBC quoted a Greek source as saying that the Greek side did not make the so-called promise of the British side.
Agence France-Presse quoted a source from the Greek government as saying that according to the usual practice, the issue of the Parthenon stone carving was "included in the agenda of the meeting together with other bilateral and international issues" and "No.10 Downing Street knew about it".
Mitsotakis expressed "displeasure" at the British side's temporary cancellation of the meeting and ended his visit to Britain ahead of schedule.
On September 7, 2023, a man visited the Parthenon marble sculpture at the British Museum in London, England. Xinhua News Agency reporter Mars photo
The decision of the British side to cancel the meeting has raised doubts in the UK. Ed Wedge, consultant of Parthenon Project and former British Minister of State for Culture and Digital Economy, told British Sky News Channel that Britain's previous position was that the problem of Parthenon stone carving should be solved by the British Museum itself, and Sunak's intervention in this way was "unnecessary", which was not conducive to the relationship between Britain and Greece.
The deadlock between the two sides about stone carving is difficult to solve.
In an interview with the BBC, Greek Minister of Labor and Social Welfare Zonis Georgiadis said that Mitsotakis's remarks about the Parthenon stone carvings expressed not only his personal views, but also the "unanimous views of 11 million Greeks" and the views of many people around the world.
On January 10, 2022, at the Acropolis Museum in Athens, Greece, Greek Prime Minister Kyrgiakos Mitsotakis (first from the right) was looking at a stone carving fragment of the Parthenon of the Acropolis originally preserved in an Italian museum. Xinhua News Agency (photo by Marius Rollos)
In the early 19th century, Thomas Bruce, Earl of Elgin, a British diplomat, got permission from the authorities in Greece under the Ottoman Empire in Turkey to cut a large number of stone carvings at the Parthenon and transport them back to Britain.
The British government later acquired these stone carvings and exhibited them as collections of the British Museum. Greece has long asked the British Museum to permanently return the stone carvings "collected" since 1816, but the British side refused.
At present, the British Museum and the Acropolis Museum in Athens, Greece exhibit different parts of the Parthenon stone carving, while the sculpture exhibited in the British Museum is called "Elgin Marble", which is the essence of the stone carving.
On January 10, 2022, at the Acropolis Museum in Athens, Greece, the staff were putting back a stone carving fragment of the Parthenon of the Acropolis that was originally preserved in an Italian museum. Xinhua News Agency (photo by Marius Rollos)
Agence France-Presse said that museums in many western countries, including the British Museum, are under increasing public pressure to return cultural relics looted from other countries. British law stipulates that the British Museum shall not remove the collection from its collection except under certain circumstances, but the law does not prohibit lending. The British Museum has previously negotiated with the Greek side on long-term "lending" stone carvings.
However, the "lending" program seems to be unacceptable to Greece. Sunak's spokesman said that the premise of "lending" is that "Greece accepts the British Museum as the legal owner".
Recently, the U.S. government distributed to members of Congress a map of "States benefiting from military aid to Ukraine", detailing for the first time how about $27 billion in military aid to Ukraine was transformed into military industrial investment in dozens of states.
According to public opinion analysis, the Democratic government's move is intended to persuade more Republican congressmen to support military aid to Ukraine.
Reuters reported on the 28th that according to the distribution map, Pennsylvania benefited the most, with 2.36 billion US dollars, which came from the federal government's allocation and investment for the production of weapons and ammunition to aid Ukraine. There are eight Republican congressmen in Pennsylvania, three of whom oppose military aid to Ukraine.
Texas received $1.45 billion in arms orders, and there were 25 members of the Texas Republican House of Representatives, 18 of whom opposed military aid to Ukraine. Arizona received $2.196 billion in arms orders, and three of the six Republican congressmen in the state opposed continuing military aid to Ukraine.
On October 20th, President joseph robinette asked Congress to approve a sum of $106 billion, including military aid to Ukraine and Israel. He emphasized that providing military assistance to Ukraine is equivalent to providing jobs for Americans.
The White House explained that some aid weapons and equipment were transferred from American stocks, so part of the funds to be used for military aid to Ukraine will flow into the pockets of American enterprises in the form of investment and government procurement to produce substitutes.
Biden, for example, said that the Patriot missile defense system for aiding Ukraine was produced by Raytheon, headquartered in Arizona, while the shells for aiding Ukraine were produced in 12 states, including Pennsylvania, Ohio and Texas.
Reuters explained that the military enterprises in Arizona, Pennsylvania, Arkansas, Wisconsin and other states are the big winners in aiding the Ukrainian army, and the military enterprises in at least 25 other states have received a total order of 18 billion US dollars.
Military industrial enterprises are usually the financiers behind American politicians. Since the escalation of the Ukrainian crisis, the United States has continuously poured fuel on the fire and increased its military assistance. Arms dealers have harvested a large number of orders, and their share prices have risen, making a lot of money.
At present, most Republicans and Democrats in Congress are in favor of continuing to aid Ukraine, but some members of the House of Representatives, mainly hard-line Republicans and conservatives, have high-profile opposition, which poses resistance to Biden's government's military aid plan.
In this regard, the White House hopes to "influence" the relevant constituencies with investment projects and employment opportunities by explaining which States benefit from military aid to Ukraine, with a view to bundling interests with these Republican politicians and persuading them to change their attitudes.
In addition, in view of the fact that Pennsylvania and Arizona are "swing states" that have a decisive influence on the election results, Biden's "tendency" on the issue of "aiding Ukraine to benefit" is self-evident.